Find your biomorphic design inspiration in this cave-like “Organic House” by Javier Senosiain

Rose Mary Petrass

Casa Organica
Image: Casa Organica / Leandro Bulzzano

For Mexican architect Javier Senosiain, Casa Organica – Organic House in English – represents the union between architecture and nature.

Constructed in 1984, the contours of the house are curved, with partially-subterranean rooms designed to resemble igloos, caves, and a mother’s womb. According to the architect this aims to meet not only the physical needs but also the psychological needs of the resident.

The design is not only “biomorphic” (meaning that design elements visually resemble the natural world) – it is more specifically “biomimetic” (meaning that it not only seeks to replicate natural forms, but achieves this in a sustainable relationship with natural systems).

Casa Organica

Walking down into the earth, the entryway is a spiralling tunnel leading into the main living space. The design is meant to emulate cave dwellings of humanity’s distant past, avoiding intensive modification by its inhabitants by including built-in integrated furniture. It surprisingly includes a built-in slide to travel quickly down into the garden.

Born in 1948, Senosiain is widely considered to be a pioneer of organic architecture. His career has also focused on researching the use of “ferrocement” in both small and large structures.

Construction using ferrocement, a system of construction using reinforced mortar applied over woven metal mesh, allowed the architect to form the home into organic structures that emphasises natural aesthetics, light and an absence of hard corners.

Casa Organica Pinterest
La Casa Organica is an example of ferrocement construction. Image: Pinterest

The process involved placing the frame for the ferrocement over the prepared foundation and shaping a metallic frame made from bent iron rods to create the walls and roof. Rammed earth encloses the partially underground dwelling, insulating it and helping to sustain a stable temperature in the interior and lower energy needs.

This bio-architectural vision is tucked away in the moderate microclimate of Naucalpan, northwest of Mexico City. Architect Senosiain and his family have resided in the home for 25 years, and it is now open to the public.

Casa Organica

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